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The State of Texas has come up with a way to get parents who owe child support to pay up, because if they don’t they can’t renew their car registration.
Annette Hernandez with the Child Support Division of the Texas Attorney General’s office says the program was implemented in September 2016.
“It’s worked out really well,” says Hernandez. “We’ve received over a million dollars in child support payments on over 4,600 cases.”
The AG’s office says they collected $54,000 in back support payments in one case alone.
According to state records, of about one million parents across Texas who are required to pay child support, nearly half have fallen behind on payments by at least a month.
The government typically collects from unwilling parents by withholding wages, tax refunds, and lottery winnings.
The vast majority of parents who have custody rights are women, and in Texas 48 percent of single mothers live in poverty, according to recent census data.
Hernandez says in the past they’ve denied professional and recreational licenses as well related to non-payment of child support.
Experts say parents’ delayed or incomplete support produces irreversible consequences for children.